May 122016
Fort De Soto Park Spring Migration: Pt II

Warbler activity is not confined to the food bearing vegetation in the southern region of Fort De Soto Park.           The Scarlet Tanager above (image 1) was photographed at Fort De Soto Park in April 2016. After a near full morning of birding the bottom half of Mullet Key, Tom Obrock […]

Apr 102015
Stalking the sweet-singing, reclusive wood thrush

The wood thrush’s song is one of the most beautiful among eastern birds, and its flute-like warble is one of the reasons Vitek Jirinec picked this species to study. “It’s a charismatic species,” he said. “Even the lay public knows about wood thrushes because of their beautiful song. Oftentimes its song is described as the […]

Jun 082014
Northern Climes to Nicaragua: Long-distance Migrants on Shade Coffee Farms

The challenges facing bird conservation can seem insurmountable. And it’s true that some of the threats—climate change, habitat loss—are overwhelming in their scope. But as American Bird Conservancy has been pointing out for years, sometimes even the smallest changes can have enormous effects, from keeping your cat inside to making the right choices when you […]

May 112014
"Coffee Bird": Western Tanager

It’s an eye-catching mixture of red, yellow, and black. But the Western Tanager can be surprisingly inconspicuous during the breeding season, since it spends its time high in the treetops. This tanager breeds farther north than any other member of its mostly tropical family. In winter, though, it joins Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Wood Thrush, and dozens […]

May 012014
Help Save Wood Thrush: Drink Bird Friendly Coffee

The Wood Thrush is an ambassador for the forest birds of eastern North America, and a modern-day “canary in the coal mine.” According to the Breeding Bird Survey (BBS), this species has declined by over 50 percent since systematic counts began in the late 1960s. I wrote about the demise of the Wood Thrush in […]

Mar 282014
Top Ten Ways to Help Spring's Migrating Birds

Despite persistent late-occurring snowstorms, average temperatures are starting to climb, soon to be followed by the most deadly period of the year for birds: springtime. Although spring means new life and hope to many people, billions of birds face the tribulations of a perilous migration followed shortly by breeding and the production of scores of […]

Feb 252014
Solitary Songster: Hermit Thrush

The Hermit Thrush is perhaps best known for its beautiful song: one clear, flute-like note followed by a series of ethereal, bell-like tones. People who hear this bird sing rarely forget it. “One of my most memorable birding experiences was in western Maryland, where I was coming down a shady forest trail,” says Gemma Radko, […]

Feb 202014
Up to One Billion Birds May Be Killed Annually in Building Collisions

In the most comprehensive study of its kind, involving the review and analysis of almost two dozen studies and over 92,000 records, federal scientists have found that between 365 and 988 million birds are likely killed in the United States each year as a result of collisions with buildings. The study, “Bird–building Collisions in the […]

Aug 172013
 Five Bird Species Your Grandchildren May Never See

Scientists who have spent decades trying to reverse the broad decline of migratory birds in the Americas will converge by the hundreds later this month in Snowbird, Utah, to seek solutions to the threats migratory birds are facing at northern breeding grounds, southern wintering grounds, and numerous migration stopovers. The pivotal August 25–28 meeting of […]